Smooth sailing for local holiday travelers

Delays are minor on returns home

“It’s nice to be back and go see our cat,” said Devon Butler, returning to Somerville from New London, Conn.
“It’s nice to be back and go see our cat,” said Devon Butler, returning to Somerville from New London, Conn.

Whether by plane, train, or bus, Thanksgiving weekend travelers returned to Greater Boston from destinations across the country and around the world Sunday — in most cases, smoothly.

There were minor delays at South Station, where the 1:13 p.m. Acela Express arrived 65 minutes late and the 2:15 was nearly a half-hour behind schedule. But passengers took the minor inconvenience in stride.

“I’m used to it with Amtrak, because I’m from Connecticut,” said Somerville resident Devon Butler, 24, who spent the holiday with family in New London.


Butler, a schoolteacher, said she spent the extra time working and was able to warn her boyfriend, Sam Donahue, 25, so that he arrived right on time.

Get Fast Forward in your inbox:
Forget yesterday's news. Get what you need today in this early-morning email.
Thank you for signing up! Sign up for more newsletters here

“It’s been a crazy week of traveling all over New England, so it’s nice to be back and go see our cat,” Butler said.

South Station bus passengers also reported minimal inconvenience, even as one of the year’s biggest travel periods wound down.

Wen Dong Tang, a graduate student at Dartmouth College, took a bus from Hanover, N.H., to Boston on his way home to family near Shanghai for holiday break.

Tang, 26, said the trip went smoothly, but he could tell South Station was busy when the bus arrived.


“They took a lot of time looking for a parking place; that’s the only problem,” he said.

Travelers arriving at Logan International Airport’s Terminal C also reported trouble-free trips.

Arlington resident Rusty McKinney, 33, said the only difficulty on his and his girlfriend’s JetBlue flight from Charlotte, N.C., came from their fussy 15-month-old daughter.

A spokesman for the Massachusetts Port Authority, which owns the airport, said Massport expected more than 100,000 travelers to pass through the airport Sunday.

By late Sunday afternoon, Massport spokesman Matthew Brelis said flights were continuing to arrive and depart with no significant problems.


Portsmouth, N.H., resident Carrie Saunders had a “great” flight from Pittsburgh, where she spent the weekend with her parents after Thanksgiving dinner with her husband and children.

“It was a full plane, I guess, but I hadn’t selected my seat, so I got upgraded,” she said. The flight even left 11 minutes early. “The longest wait has been waiting for my husband to get through traffic.”

Denali Schmidt, a 20-year-old film and animation student at the Rhode Island School of Design, spent about 21 hours in the air, but she had no complaints.

“I just came from Capetown, South Africa, so I’ve been traveling all day,” she said.

Schmidt spent Thanksgiving break with other RISD students curating an exhibit at Capetown’s Slave Lodge museum and learning about South Africa’s apartheid past.

She said her flights to Johannesburg and then to New York and Boston had been trouble-free.

Jeremy C. Fox can be reached at Follow him on Twitter at @JeremyCFox.